The Life of Martha Hughes Cannon

Jul 18, 2012

Thursday, we're profiling a new KUED documentary that explores the life of a remarkable woman, Martha Hughes Cannon. Women in 19th-century Utah enjoyed rights unprecedented in other states: they could divorce their husbands, own their own property and vote. Cannon made the most of these opportunities. She was a practicing physician and in 1896 she became the first woman in the US to serve as a state senator. She was also a polygamist wife though, a role that would eventually destroy her public career.

KUED's documentary "Martha Hughes Cannon" premieres Sunday, June 22 at 8:00 p.m. For details and for more resources, visit


CORRECTION: Martha Hughes Cannon served as the first state senator in the country, not as a US senator. She was elected in November 1896 and spent two terms in office.